Bcl-2 Overexpression Induces Neurite Outgrowth via the Bmp4/Tbx3/NeuroD1 Cascade in H19-7 Cells

  • Yun Young Lee
  • Hye-jin Choi
  • So Young Lee
  • Shin-Young Park
  • Min-Jeong Kang
  • Jinil Han
  • Joong-Soo HanEmail author
Original Research


Bcl-2 is overexpressed in the nervous system during neural development and plays an important role in modulating cell survival. In addition to its anti-apoptotic function, it has been suggested previously that Bcl-2 might act as a mediator of neuronal differentiation. However, the mechanism by which Bcl-2 might influence neurogenesis is not sufficiently understood. In this study, we aimed to determine the non-apoptotic functions of Bcl-2 during neuronal differentiation. First, we used microarrays to analyze the whole-genome expression patterns of rat neural stem cells overexpressing Bcl-2 and found that Bcl-2 overexpression induced the expression of various neurogenic genes. Moreover, Bcl-2 overexpression increased the neurite length as well as expression of Bmp4, Tbx3, and proneural basic helix–loop–helix genes, such as NeuroD1, NeuroD2, and Mash1, in H19-7 rat hippocampal precursor cells. To determine the hierarchy of these molecules, we selectively depleted Bmp4, Tbx3, and NeuroD1 in Bcl-2-overexpressing cells. Bmp4 depletion suppressed the upregulation of Tbx3 and NeuroD1 as well as neurite outgrowth, which was induced by Bcl-2 overexpression. Although Tbx3 knockdown repressed Bcl-2-mediated neurite elaboration and downregulated NeuroD1 expression, it did not affect Bcl-2-induced Bmp4 expression. While the depletion of NeuroD1 had no effect on the expression of Bcl-2, Bmp4, or Tbx3, Bcl-2-mediated neurite outgrowth was suppressed. Taken together, these results demonstrate that Bcl-2 regulates neurite outgrowth through the Bmp4/Tbx3/NeuroD1 cascade in H19-7 cells, indicating that Bcl-2 may have a direct role in neuronal development in addition to its well-known anti-apoptotic function in response to environmental insults.


Bcl-2 Neurite outgrowth Bmp4 Tbx3 NeuroD1 



Neural precursor cells


Basic helix–loop–helix


Central nervous system


Basic fibroblast growth factor



This work was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) Grant funded by the Korean government (MSIP) (NRF-2016R1A2B4015358) and partly supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (NRF-2013R1A1A2061420). In addition, this research was supported by a grant of the Korea Health Technology R&D Project through the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI), funded by the Ministry of Health & Welfare, Republic of Korea (Grant Number: HI19C0611), and supported by the research fund of Hanyang University (HY-2019).

Author Contributions

YY Lee conceptualized and designed of the study, collected and assembled the data, analyzed and interpreted the results, and wrote the manuscript. H-J Choi conceptualized and designed the study and provided financial support. SY Lee analyzed the microarray data and performed some of the experiments. S-Y Park analyzed and interpreted the results. M-J Kang conducted some of the experiments. J Han analyzed the microarray data. J-S Han conceptualized and designed the study, analyzed and interpreted the data, wrote the manuscript, and provided financial support. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Supplementary material

10571_2019_732_MOESM1_ESM.docx (989 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 989 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biomedical Sciences, Graduate School of Biomedical Science and EngineeringHanyang UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Biomedical Research Institute and Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, College of MedicineHanyang UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea
  3. 3.Gencurix, IncSeoulRepublic of Korea

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